I loved Western Swing and Hank Williams` music, and I now know that it`s a 6th tuning that gives you all of those classic licks.
I`m much more energetic now; you might say live performance is my mission.
And I now think that Stratocasters and Telecasters are way cool.
The ones I have got great necks; of course, all of the Fenders from that era are incredible.
I went pretty much for one tone, and I knew at that time that I wanted to play a Rickenbacker.
In the last two years or so, I`ve made a conscious decision to play American guitars; I don`t know of a more subtle way to say it.
The only sliding I did was on the kind of instrument that you put on your lap; no Spanish electrics.
You should play with real musicians; the best music comes from real people interacting with each other.
No, but I`ve always felt that with true talent, and a commitment to hard work, it is possible to achieve an enduring respect and appreciation. In other words, I don`t take my fans for granted.
I stuck with that size because I could bend the strings so well, and somewhere along the line I must have gotten it into my mind that I had small hands, so I was thinking I`d never be able to play a full-scale guitar, but I also felt like I was cheating or cutting corners.
I usually destroy unreleased material. It has a way of coming back to haunt you.
I wrote that song for my wife, and it`s what some guy who`s sitting under a tree would be singing to the woman of his life, telling her how wonderful she is. To me, that`s more lasting than something that sounds like it belongs on a movie soundtrack.
Washburn`s an old American name, but this one was assembled overseas.
I thought what I was good at doing was playing real simple guitar licks, since I`d cut my teeth on what Duane Eddy was doing; licks that were simple but had staying power.
There`s just not a lot of guys around playing like that these days; a lot of steel players are plugging into stomp boxes, trying to sound like Jeff Beck on a steel guitar.
When I made Blue Moon Swamp, there was a lot of trial and error; I was trying to find people who would be simpatico with my style, and with what I had in mind for the album.
Now that I`m older, I like almost anything that`s done well, even surf music and instrumentals; I really enjoyed the interviews with the Ventures in your magazine.
I`ve also become much more the musician I`ve always wanted to be.
I`ve studied a lot of great people over the years - Pete Seeger, James Brown - and tried to incorporate elements that I`ve admired, though I can`t say I dance like James.
I don`t know that all the demons have been beaten, but I`m very, very proud of those songs.
But I think beautiful is simple and elegant, like a ballad with simple harmony.
The Telecaster doesn`t really sound that good for the kind of rock and roll that a lot of people played.
On Eye of the Zombie, I just got some studio musicians who were competent, but some of them weren`t right for what I was trying to do.
I`m now comfortable playing a lot of the old songs, and I`ve gotten out a lot of the old equipment.
Even though I have often recorded alone, I still feel the best music is made by musicians playing off each other.
I`m like a twenty-two-year-old kid in a new band trying to get noticed and break through, because the vast majority of people have never seen me play live.
That song has the full extent of my mandolin abilities; I`m not a good mandolin player at all.
On Eye of the Zombie, I had so-called studio musicians.
Even though James Burton was my idol, I didn`t think I could carry his shoes back then.
I work hard at that, but the fact that there are a lot of good songs means there are also a lot of really bad songs I`ve written that you never hear.
When I was a young guy, none of the people I liked got Grammys. That`s just the way it was. They honored a lot of great people, but they just weren`t in my musical universe. Then something changed 15, 20 years ago, where they started kind of getting a little hipper, honoring rock and pop and even rap. It seems to be not just reserved for old, gray white men anymore, kind of like our politics.
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